Sunday, September 19, 2010

Cold Day Comfort Food

Ugh! Night shifts. I really, really, really, really hate them. They come around about every 3 weeks, and I have just finished them until next time. Tasha was so happy to see me when I got home at 7.45 this morning. She was asleep on the bed when I left last night, but I always crack a secure window as an escape route for the cats if they are still inside when I go out. The trouble is, once out they can't get back in. Hence an extremely ecstatic cat when I got home.

Yes, straight up onto the boot of the car wanting smooches.

Sophie -  Happy to see me but stand-offish as usual.

The light was pretty this morning so, since I was holding my camera, I snapped a couple of things before heading inside.

Mexican Orange Blossom, with large leaved Puka behind it, and a glimpse of the lemon tree

The lemon tree, with my artistically aged tin fence, and chicken wire for contrast. I'm afraid that side of the garden, the cold damp side that I hardly ever go round, rarely sees me. Yes there is sun in this picture, but five minutes after this picture was taken the sun is gone completely from that side until it's five minutes of glory the next day at the same time.

Common old jasmine - its scent greets everyone who walks up my drive way and me when I get out of my car

Arum lilies and ladder fern. Both inherited when I moved into this house. I've tried getting rid of these 'weeds', and now I have resigned myself to co-existing with them. Nothing short of a direct nuclear hit will stop these things from growing. I guess they have their own charm. They are green all year round, and grow in this area that is damp and shady throughout winter, and dry and shady throughout summer.

I have an "Apple Blossom" flower carpet rose to go in this problem spot. I'm scratching my head over why I have a dead stripe in the lawn. Very strange.

New Zealand has been in the grip of a low worthy of mid winter. It has been cold. It has been raining and hailing and gale-ing today in Napier, starting not long after I took the above pictures. Other parts of New Zealand have suffered snow in quantities that have made rooves collapse beneath the weight!!!

And if there is one thing about winter-like weather it is that it makes me want to comfort eat.

Ive never been much of a sausage fan, however I saw these in the deli section of my local supermarket.

I was suss. My last experience of vegetarian sausages was many years ago. I think those were TVP-based. They tasted funny, and they literally left layers behind in the pan where they stuck no matter how much I tried to keep them moving. In short, they were disgusting.

I decided to give these new vegetarian sausages a go. They were pricey, at over $NZ7.00 for 6. But when I divide that by 3 (the number of meals I will get from them), it's not so bad.

The main ingredients: Tofu, Onions, Wheat gluten, Roasted red onion, Cheddar cheese, Parmesan cheese, Parsley.

I gently fried them, and ate them with a fried egg, baked beans, and poached tomatoes. And the verdict? They were delicious and filling and didn't stick to the pan at all. A true winter comfort food meal!!!

Tomorrow's adventure is to finally overcome my fear of Tofu. I have bought a block, watched a very informative video on how to press it to extract all the excess fluid, and found this recipe  which is for Penne With Heirloom Tomato Sauce and Roasted Tofu.

***I ended up cooking the tofu in a honey/ginger/chilli stir fry. The recipe called for marinating the tofu in the above mixture for "1 hour to overnight". Kind of a big difference. The mixture seemed strong and I was short on time so I went for the 1 hour option. It was okay, just very bland. I will do this recipe again but I will definitely marinate it overnight next time.

Live and learn. And now I have cooked using tofu for the first time so am not terrified of it anymore heh heh

1 comment:

  1. Funny how one womans weeds would be another (me!) womans treasure. Love the arum lily and ladder fern combo.